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5 Application Mistakes To Never Make Again

By Grace Schlickman

At a past meeting, Scott Farrell of Golin talked to us about his success in working for one of the biggest PR agencies in the world. Even as President of Global Corporate Communication at Golin, he says he still reads over applications, cover letters and holds interviews. Here is a list of tips for what a resume/cover letter should look like in order for you to land your dream job from Mr. Farrell himself

1. Avoid spelling and grammar mistakes.

When companies such as Golin receive 800+ applications for one open position, even one mistake will put your resume at the bottom of the pile. One little spelling mistake, and you’re application will most likely be thrown in the trash. Read and re-read your work, have someone else read it, read it backwards, do whatever it takes to fix those mistakes.

 2. Don’t state you GPA unless it’s outstanding.

Unless your GPA is asked for, or exceptional, don’t worry about putting it on your resume. Many companies are more interested in how you apply the information you learned in your classes to the real world, than they are the letter grades you received. Of course, if you graduate with honors or were a straight A student, don’t be afraid to flaunt that, but when it comes down to two applications, grades are often not the deciding factor.

3. Know the name of the person you’re interviewing with or who your sending your application to.

Be prepared to Google, search LinkedIn or make a few phone calls to find out the person, or people that will hold your interview. Putting in the extra effort to get to know these people will make you more comfortable during the interview and show the company how much you care. There is a real person out there who will be reading your application, the more personable the better.

4. Learn about the company before you apply and interview.

Know what the company stands for before you start writing. If possible, learn about special projects the company is working on, and mention what you like about them. Any research you do to learn more about the company will not go unnoticed.

5. Avoid saying, “I would love to work for…” in your cover letter.

They already know you want to work for them. If you didn’t actually want to work there, you wouldn’t be sending in an application. Instead, tell a story of when you realized you wanted to be in this business. Focus on why you want to work there, instead of just telling them that you do. Don’t just restate your resume in your cover letter, because they’re going to read that already. This is your place to show a little personality and traits that you have, that the company would benefit from.